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Will This Abandoned 1970 Cadillac Deville Actually Start and Drive Home?

Will This Abandoned 1970 Cadillac Deville Actually Start and Drive Home?

A Cadillac from the days Cadillac still built proper land barges

Most people would tell you not to buy a car with visible rust that’s been sitting in a field since the Y2K but that’s not what Vice Grip Garage is all about. No, Vice Grip’s mission is to save as many cars as possible and the fact that this Caddy’s been sunk in a valley bottom all the way to the chassis isn’t a good enough reason to not rescue it.

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Al Capone's Armored 1928 Cadillac is for Sale at the Low Price of Just $1 Million

Al Capone’s Armored 1928 Cadillac is for Sale at the Low Price of Just $1 Million

Can you really put a price on a piece of automotive history, though?

What you’re looking at here isn’t only allegedly Al Capone’s very own Cadillac, but it may also be one of the world’s very first armored cars. While there’s no for-sure way to know if Al Capone really owned this baby, a Milwaikee Sentinel story from 1921 did trace the car’s license plates to Mae Capone, Al’s wife. History of the car is known from 1933 onward, however, so there’s nearly a century worth of known history to go with it. If you’re really like to own it, though, the asking price is a steep $1 million, so you might want to run that past your wife first.

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1959 Cadillac Eldorado Biarritz Convertible

1959 Cadillac Eldorado Biarritz Convertible

The running epitome of ’50s excess

The ’50s were a strange decade: on the one hand, the danger of nuclear annihilation grew bigger and bigger as tensions between East and West reached new peaks and, on the other hand, automotive design also reached new peaks - peaks touched by the ultra-high fins of cars like the 1959 Cadillac Eldorado Biarritz Convertible, a true symbol of its time.

When you think of American cars from the ’50s, depending on who you are, you’re bound to first picture in your head one of three cars: the 1957 Chevy Bel Air, the 1955 Ford Thunderbird or the 1959 Eldorado Biarritz Convertible. The latter is most definitely the showboat, figuratively and literally, of a whole design trend; a trend that climaxed with this very car that, in a way, managed to kill off the trend altogether. The trend I’m talking about is of aeronautical inspiration, and it took off (pun intended) in the late ’40s and early ’50s thanks to concept cars like the Buick Le Sabre and a host of other GM Motorama creations.

No, those chrome-bathed fins didn’t help the cars corner better nor did they aid the back end in sticking to the ground better - they were just for style, and 1959 was the year of all-out chrome and all-out fins. Some think those cars are everything that’s wrong with American cars, others simply think they’re flamboyant while others still adore them. I guess it’s a matter of personal preference but, undoubtedly, the ’59 Eldorado continues to turn heads 60 years later.

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1931 Cadillac Series 370 Phaeton

1931 Cadillac Series 370 Phaeton

The Cadillac of Cadillacs

In the late 1920s, most auto manufacturers had shifted production to multi-cylinder internal combustion engines. As such, Cadillac needed to keep up with the Joneses and began working on a V-12 and V-16 model. Even at that time, it didn’t take long, and by 1931 Cadillac began selling the Cadillac Series 370 V-12. Surprisingly, Cadillac offered the V-12 with the same bodywork as the V-16, despite the fact that it featured a shorter wheelbase. This left the V-12 model looking so similar to the V-16 model that the only easy way to tell a V-12 from a V-16 (unless they were parked next to each other) was to look for the V-12 Badge.

The Series 370 Phaeton that you see here was manufactured for the 1931 model year, making it one of the early 370s, also known as the 370A. As you can see, the car featured a classy design with a drop top and side-mounted spare tires. The hood was long, but not nearly as long as that of the V-16, which happened to be about four inches longer. The V-12 model was actually a huge seller for Cadillac, with a total of 5,733 examples sold in 1931 alone. That’s a whole heap more than the 363 examples of the V-16 model sold in the same year.

The model you see here was professionally restored back in the late 1990s and has only been driven 169 miles since resto completion. It will be going under the hammer during Monterey Car Week at the Mecum Auction and is expected to grab anywhere between $210,000 and $250,000 on the stand. Before that happens, let’s take a better look at this beautiful 370 Series and talk a little more about it.

Read our full review on the 1931 Cadillac Series 370 Phaeton below

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Chip Foose Is Building a Gorgeous, Unique 1939 Cadillac Based on 80-Year-Old Sketch

Chip Foose Is Building a Gorgeous, Unique 1939 Cadillac Based on 80-Year-Old Sketch

Art Deco style revived in the 21st century

I don’t know about you, but I haven’t heard much of Chip Foose lately. Maybe I’ve been watching the wrong TV shows and didn’t pay too much attention to his work, but it’s only now that the California-based designer has caught my attention with a new project. And boy what a project it is! Instead of doing one of his usual customs based on an existing car, Foose is building a vehicle based on a sketch from the 1930s.

Specifically, Foose wants to build a full-size model of the two-door Cadillac that GM designer Art Ross penned for the 1939 model year. Based on the 1935 60 Special Sedan, it was called the "Madame X" and was supposed to be created for a special client. But Cadillac shelved the project and the sleek, coupe version of the 60 Special Sedan never made it on the streets. Nearly 80 years have passed since Ross penned the "Madame X," and the design is finally getting the attention it deserves.

According to Hot Rod, Foose and his team of craftsmen are building the "Maxam X" for GM dealership owner Wes Rydell and his wife, Vivian. This isn’t the first car Foose is building for Rydell, having already crafted bespoke versions of the 1954 Chevrolet Bel Air and 1935 Chevrolet Phaeton for the dealership tycoon.

“The Madam X Cadillac is turning out to be one of the most stylish cars I’ve ever built,” said Foose. “It’s a great combination of modern technology and old-school coachbuilding tradition. I can’t wait to reveal it.”

According to Foose, the "Madam X" Caddy will be revealed later this summer, meaning we should see it in the metal before September kicks in.

Continue reading for the full story.

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1953 Cadillac Series 62 Coupe By Ghia

1953 Cadillac Series 62 Coupe By Ghia

Cadillac is a company that has had some fantastic highs as well as some depressing Cimarron-level lows. The prewar V-16 models were world leaders in luxury, but even after WWII, Cadillac had a few offerings that still put it at the front of the pack. Some early versions of the Eldorado were in a price bracket with Rolls-Royce, and then there were the Series 62 Ghia coupes. Coachbuilt cars in general were far less plentiful by 1953 when the Ghia coupes were built, and Cadillacs even more so. The company had invested heavily in coachbuilding during the ’20s in order to be able to offer a staggering number of body styles and customization options without buyers needing to go to a third party to have a body built.

So even in the ’30s, couchbuilt Cadillacs were already rare, but in 1953, the Ghia coupe was something extra special. But what makes these cars so great, apart from the fact that they are so very rare, is that they are also something of a mystery. Very little information, paperwork or even photos from the period remain, and there are even unconfirmed rumors about the cars that get passed around as facts.

Continue reading to learn more about the 1953 Cadillac Series 62 Coupe By Ghia.

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Cadillac Eldorado - A Look Back

Cadillac Eldorado - A Look Back

The “personal luxury vehicle” is an idea that many U.S. automakers have tried to make work over the years, with varying levels of success. The idea was a coupe or convertible meant more for luxury than outright speed, a bit like a grand tourer but with more of an American flavor. Many of these models tanked even before European grand tourers were readily available and well-known in this country. Only a couple of cars managed to make it work, and one stayed stay alive for 10 generations spanning 50 years. That car was the Cadillac Eldorado, and it remains one of the best loved classic Cadillacs.

The Eldorado started off as a concept car in 1952, to mark Cadillac’s 50th anniversary. This being the golden anniversary, the name Eldorado (the name of a mythical city of gold that the Spanish were searching for in South America) was chosen. The idea specifically came from Mary-Ann Marini, a secretary at GM’s marketing department. The car was a flagship vehicle for many of the years that it was produced, and it was always used as a way for Cadillac’s designers to try out new and bolder styling ideas.

Continue reading for the full story.

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1930 Cadillac V-16 Two-Passenger Coupe by Fleetwood

1930 Cadillac V-16 Two-Passenger Coupe by Fleetwood

It might be hard to tell now, after the massive hit that Cadillac’s reputation took during the malaise era, but there was once a time when Cadillac’s drive to be the best luxury car company in the world was absolutely maniacal. This drive led to the purchase of two different coachbuilders, Fleetwood and Fisher, in the mid-’20s, so that Cadillac could offer everything for its cars in-house. The norm at the time for luxury cars was to buy just a chassis from the manufacturer and then a separate custom body from a coachbuilder. Cadillac wanted a customer to be able to order a full custom car from it, thus streamlining the process and potentially offering a greater range of custom options.

The other big push at the time was to develop a V16 engine, essentially just to show up Packard, Cadillac’s biggest rival, that had just debuted a new V12. And thus was born the Cadillac V16, sometimes just called the “Sixteen,” Cadillac’s top of the line model from 1930 to 1940. It was offered with a dizzying list of options, all right from Cadillac, and special requests were of course welcome. It was an era-defining luxury car.

Continue reading to learn more about the 1930 Cadillac V-16 Two-Passenger Coupe by Fleetwood.

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Mad Men: Draper's '65 Caddy For Sale

Mad Men: Draper’s ’65 Caddy For Sale

Don Draper’s story may have come to an end, but you can pick up where he left off by buying his 1965 Cadillac Coupe DeVille. Now that it’s no longer needed on set, the Caddy is up for auction at Screenbid, with a high bid of $26,250 — a price that’s sure to increase many times over before the auction ends on August 7th.

Draper’s daily driver looks to be in excellent condition. The silver paint looks great, the body panels are straight and the red interior appears to be clean, though you might want to get it steam cleaned, considering the number of Lucky Strikes the car inhaled.

The Coupe DeVille was basically a character of its own for the last few seasons of Mad Men. Draper, played outstandingly by Jon Hamm, reluctantly purchased the car at the beginning of season five and used until the end of the seventh and final season.

But why stop with just car? You can embrace the complete Draper lifestyle by also bidding on and winning Don’s playing cards, night robe and slippers, black lace dress shoes, silver and glass set and Ray Ban sunglasses. Just maybe do so without the chain smoking, heavy drinking, womanizing and erratic behavior. Nah...what fun would that be?

Continue reading for the full story.

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Meet Rita Hayworth's Cadillac Ghia: Video

Meet Rita Hayworth’s Cadillac Ghia: Video

We’ve all done some pretty crazy things for love, but buying a one-of-two Cadillac with a coach-built Italian body as a gift for the object of our desire probably isn’t one of them. But that’s what Middle Eastern royal and international playboy Aly Khan did to impress his then wife, actress Rita Hayworth, as their marriage began to fall apart in the early 1950s. It’s all covered in this latest video from our friends at Petrolicious.

Despite the gesture, they divorced a short time later and Hayworth ended up with this absolutely gorgeous 1953 Cadillac Ghia. Built using Cadillac Series 62 Coupe Deville underpinnings, the Ghia featured a custom body and interior fabricated by Italian coachbuilder Carrozzeria Ghia of Turin, Italy. The entire car is immaculate inside and out. We’re especially digging the four custom-fitted suitcases behind the seats. The General Motors parts, including the 5.4-liter OHV V-8, would make servicing the car much easier in the States.

The car changed hands a few times among collectors since being owned by Hayworth, and was eventually purchased by Robert E. Peterson, founder of the Peterson Automotive Museum, where it’s still on display today. Interestingly, no one seems to know its original color. Early photos show it in appliance white, but the museum painted it a dark burgundy to better show off its incredible lines.

It’s fitting that this ultra-rare Caddy Ghia still lives in The City of Angels. It’s the perfect backdrop for a car with this type of old Hollywood history and provenance.

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1953 Cadillac Eldorado

1953 Cadillac Eldorado

The Eldorado model was part of the Cadillac line from 1953 to 2002. The Cadillac Eldorado was the longest running American personal luxury car as it was the only one sold after the 1998 model year. Its main competitors included the Lincoln Mark Series and the lower-priced Buick Riviera.

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Carrera Panamericana Cadillac on Amelia Island

Carrera Panamericana Cadillac on Amelia Island

When a dirt-covered 1954 Cadillac, bearing the markings of a vintage Mexican Road Race car, rolls into the driveway at the Ritz-Carlton on Amelia Island on Friday, March 9, it will represent living history.
This replica of a famed Carrera Panamericana (Mexican Road Race) Cadillac road racer, created by the General Motors Performance Division, was driven to the island by a group of journalists who began their trek in North Carolina .
“With this year’s theme of the Amelia Island Concours (...)

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1959 Cadillac Eldorado

1959 Cadillac Eldorado

Eldorado was a model built by Cadillac from 1953 to 2002. The name Eldorado was derived from the Spanish words "el dorado", the "gilded one"; the name was given originally to the legendary chief or "cacique" of a South American Indian tribe. Legend has it that his followers would sprinkle his body with gold dust on ceremonial occasions and he would wash it off again by diving into a lake. The name more frequently refers to a legendary city of fabulous riches, somewhere in South America, that inspired many European expeditions, including one to the Orinoco by England’s Sir Walter Raleigh.

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